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6 Creative Ways to Give New Life to Old Furniture

updated Dec 17, 2022
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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

There’s nothing like the amazing feeling you get when you create something new and useful out of something old and run-down. And that’s especially the case when it comes to furniture revamps. Here at Apartment Therapy, we’re continually amazed by the things resourceful DIYers can do with old, down-on-their-luck pieces of furniture. 

If you’re creative enough, that sad dresser lingering in the corner at the garage sale or junk shop could become the centerpiece of your living room. Here are some of our favorite  ways to transform your thrift store finds — or just give a little new life to pieces you already have. 

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

1. Replace the legs.

Believe it or not, this stunning apothecary cabinet was once a humble IKEA Rast cabinet. To get this look, blogger Bliss at Bliss Ranch attached chair legs to the cabinet, raising it off the ground and giving it an elegant vibe.  Similar to this, you can use new legs to elevate squatty pieces, or replace existing legs to add a little style. 

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

2. Add new legs.

And how about this stunning piece? By combining three separate IKEA RAST cabinets, removing the bottom part and adding mid-century modern-inspired legs, Nick and Bethany at Reality Daydream created this amazing dresser for their kids’ bedroom. It’s a good example of how a bit of ingenuity can breathe new life into an existing piece of furniture, especially one that’s basic in its design. 

(Image credit: A Beautiful Mess)

3. Add a little style with paper.

Ashley, who blogs on the site, At Home With Ashley, shows how she took a simple IKEA cabinet and turned it into a whimsical piece that’s perfect for her child’s nursery. It’s amazing how a very simple upgrade can completely transform  a piece of furniture.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

4. Add an unexpected material.

The drawer fronts of this IKEA RAST dresser, spotted on Canary Street Crafts, were covered with burlap! Sounds crazy, right? But as it turns out, the gray rose pattern of the burlap is an exact match for the pretty gray paint they chose for the furniture. It works together to create a beautifully elegant piece of furniture suitable for any room. 

5. Decorate doors or drawers.

A touch of Washi tape is all it took for this IKEA cabinet to look like a total overhaul. The black on white design of this simple yet effective upgrade by @home2style looks fresh and modern. 

Credit: @ciscosews

6. Paint the whole thing.

Sometimes painting a whole piece of furniture yields fantastic results. This can be especially nice when you’re willing to commit to a really bold color, as seen on this unique coffee bar by @ciscosews.